It’s only mid-March, but 2013 has been a big year for Japanese culture in Philadelphia. Though the One Book, On Philadelphia activities are winding down and the official kick-off of the Festival isn’t until April, the remaining weeks in March are still action-packed! Don’t be fooled by the timing, these events are not to be missed:
You won’t need to wait until the Tamagawa Tour begins in early April to get your taiko fix. KODO, a professional troupe from Sado island, will return to Philadelphia for a performance at the Kimmel Center on Monday, March 26. This incredible group is widely noted for its role in the increasing international popularity of taiko. Details and tickets available through the Kimmel Center.
The final showing in the Unknown Japan V, University of Laughs will be screened at PhilaMoca on Wednesday, March 20. Probably the rarest of the current series, University of Laughs is adapted from a stage show and draws its comedy from the interplay between aspiring playwrights and government censors.
Over the final weekend in March, International House of Philadelphia will run Spotlight on Shintoho, a mini-film Festival featuring productions from the golden era of Japanese cinema. This write-up in the Wall Street Journal gives a nice preview.
If you’re looking for to spend a leisurely day taking in fine Japanese art, there are two galleries in the Philadelphia Free Library (Parkway Central) that feature Japan. Life, Legend, and Landscapes is a collection of rare wood block prints. And Seeing Japan is a photo gallery done in polaroid by local artist, Aaron Manino.
There is lots to look forward to in April, but don’t miss these wonderful opportunities in March!